decorating with dodi

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Monday, July 31, 2017

I Love Target

I didn't have a lot of time today but I made one quick run into Target and got almost everything I wanted to stuff the kids' back-to-school favor bags-including some "apple" chalkboard clothespins to close the bags. I was going to make something fancy but when I saw these and remembered how short on time I am these days, I figured they would do the trick. I still think I'll make a $ Tree run just to see if I can add anything else but now it's down to finding a date and deciding on the menu! So many choices from years of Pinterest. Stay tuned.

Saturday, July 29, 2017

It's That Time Already!

So, depending on whether you are a student, parent or teacher, you might have differing opinions on whether the summer went too quickly or too slowly. From my "Nana" perspective, I think it flew by this year. And so, I am scrambling to come up with some new and different back-to-school ideas to celebrate with the kids.

Unfortunately-or fortunately...once again depending on where you are standing-this year I am going to have to settle for something a bit different than usual. Usually I have the kids over for the whole day and we make decorations, favors and food. Then their mom and dad join us for dinner. But, as is happening all the time these days, the kids are more and more involved in their own pursuits and scheduling becomes harder and harder. This year, football practice has already started for both boys and since they're not on the same age level, their practices are on conflicting that takes care of Monday through Thursday. And then, even though they have had a summer full of different vacations, they are squeezing in two more-which will take us right up to the day before school starts with all of the back-to-school shopping and scheduling still to be done.

I am nothing if not flexible these days. So now I am thinking that I will end up making the meal and favors and just having them all over for dinner one Friday night after school has started. That way we will be able to hear all of their impressions of new teachers, class mates, etc. Won't be quite the same but it will still be fun...and one more memory for them to keep.

And so with that in mind, I have started to gather up some things I have held on to from years past and am starting a list of some things I want to gather this coming week.

I am going to try some new recipes-probably something chicken, smashed potatoes, a few veggies/or salad, some kind of yummy homemade bread and I think this guy for dessert. the menu isn't in concrete just yet as I'm having fun looking at all of the ideas I have pinned.

I'll let you know what I settle on and I'm sure there will be lots of pictures to share. Stay tuned.

Friday, July 28, 2017

Changes In Store?

If you've been following my train of thought lately, you know I am having crafter's block when it comes to finding a new and exciting project for Halloween gifts this year. But, as I have been on the Pinterest hunt, I have been coming across some other ideas that have gotten me to start thinking. I really love my Halloween decor and I pretty much have everything just where it needs to go because of size and theme. But, I have begun to think about doing a bit of a mix-up this year and purging the things that won't fit into any other new spot. I began this thought process with thinking about changing up the family room mantle.  This is what it has looked like the last year or so:

I do have to admit that as I look back on this, I still love this mantle-just might be ready for a change. And, here are a few from past years:

As you can see, the majority of them were themed around the old "family" photos...and I like it but thought maybe a change was in order.

Either one of these would work as a jumping off point. I especially like the one using the witches as I have a few really cool witches of my own. Of course, that would mean moving that vignette from the living room and finding something I like just as well to fill that void. Right now it all sounds like a sort of plausible idea but as it gets closer to actually having to do all of the leg work involved, I might be singing a different tune...we shall see.

 I had about definitely made up my mind to get rid of the "laboratory" but after going back through last year's photos just now, I'm teetering once again. Decisions, decisions! Stay tuned.

Look how much fun they're having!!

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Counting the Days!

Oh yes, I am counting the days...I have been since summer began! I am over it! And, I had a little extra money and kind of felt like I deserved a little treat so... I made my first trip to Hobby Lobby in awhile. I swear my blood pressure goes down 20 points the minute I see all of the autumn stuff and start to smell the pumpkin/cinnamon in the air!

I really don't need anything new but since I was posting just yesterday of my love for tin and rust, this pumpkin was a no-brainer.

The first tin and rust pumpkin I saw was about 3 times as big as this one. I fell in love immediately but then I began to think about storing that beauty the rest of the year and I decided my brain was already on overload so I "let it go". I was very happy when I found this gem further down the aisle.

And then I spied the burlap table runner. I use a lot of burlap in my autumn decorating so I thought it would work perfectly. And then, for whatever reason, the sign spoke to me. I bought it as a gift but we shall see.

Once I have actually found some new fall treasures, the reality of the the season seems so much more imminent to me. Have I told you I can't wait?!! Stay tuned.

Monday, July 24, 2017

Dog Days of Summer!!!

As if the dog days of summer aren't BAD enough, I seem to have developed "crafter's" block! I don't know if I just don't like the new ideas coming along the pike or if there really aren't any new ideas and, because I am older than mud, I have already done all of the ones I like. Let's just say that I have pretty much been an obsessed holiday decorator and crafter for more years than I care to admit!! I love to make things for family for each holiday. But, that being said, I like to make things that there is a chance they actually like and use. And, as all of their families are growing up, the "cutesy" ideas just don't fill the bill any more. I look for traditional, vintage, shabby chic sort of things that might fit into their new decors. Sadly, I am coming up dry this year!!

Usually when this happens, I throw myself into a different large project that will keep my mind free for awhile. But, with the weather we have been having this summer, anything outside is pretty much out of the mix and who wants to do anything inside when it is dark and dreary? No matter what you might do, it doesn't look fresh and new-at least not to me.

And so, I am pitifully looking for any little thing I might want to tweak. Here's today's offering:

When I first posted the bar area, I only had the pitcher of sun flowers and candle. I knew it didn't look finished and when I came upon the family picture with the rusty frame, I remembered that I like it here. And then, "genius" struck. I grabbed my beautiful new tin tray and added it to the group. It not only mimics the tin of the pitcher but it has a lot of rusty spots so it picks up the frame and the label on the pitcher. And, believe it or not, that made me happy today...guess it doesn't take much in the dog days of summer. Heading back to Pinterest. I'm like the "Little Train That Could"-I think I can, I think I can...stay tuned!

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Is It Almost Over?

Have I told you I am not a fan of summer? Anywhere...but especially in Florida! I must say though that even though this year has been super hot, it has also been super RAINY...more than usual. And so, on the plus side, everything is super green and lush! My Gerberas-that are usually droopy beyond belief this time of year- are full and plentiful. Of course, on the other side, so are the weeds...

In any case, we have had a very busy week and are heading out of town on Friday so I thought I would get this last post done. I think all that is left is the sun room and guest bath.

I always wanted a sun room so when we finally decided to enclose the screen porch and add windows and heat/AC, I was a very happy camper. I only wish the room wasn't so long and narrow. It makes it really hard to decorate. My husband's office and the door to the garage are at the far end. There is also a treadmill, my desk and a chest that stores games and DVDs down there. I wanted a place for another TV and I must say, this space gets lots of use. It is the perfect place for the kids to watch TV or movies when the living room is full of ladies and the men have the family room TV tuned to sports.

The other end of the room houses the table that we love so much. We use it almost every day either to eat on or play a game. I love that the bird feeders are right outside these windows and there is always a show going on for us! I also have my magazine reading chair down at that end...again a favorite because of the view. And, a quick pat on the back for me. I held out for slate on the floor and it is perfect. This is the room from which visiting dogs go in and out and lots of muddy feet from the pool or the side play area come in. The slate is so easy to car for that I literally just "swab" it down.

The guest bath just has a small nod to the sun flower theme. I put the small arrangement in there but just wasn't happy with it-it just didn't have the presence I wanted. Then, on a trip out to the garage looking for something else, I saw one of my favorite candle holders that I wasn't using and thought maybe it could help. Of course, it has a pointed spoke to hold the candles and the pot on the arrangement is ceramic with NO hole on the bottom...but, with my trusty Dremel and a very small drill bit, I was able to get just the hole I needed without cracking the pot. And now, it fills the space a bit better and I am happy. And, you know what they say,"if momma is happy,...."

So that is it for late summer. Believe me, I can't wait until I can begin my next decorating theme...AUTUMN. Out will come the pumpkins and leaves and I will begin to breathe again.

In the meantime, I am still looking to fall in love with a Halloween craft project. I had a few ideas but none have really grabbed me so I am still looking. I love to get my Halloween crafting done during the summer so I have time to "smell the pumpkins" when October rolls around. We shall see. Stay tuned.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Almost Done!

So on we go to the family room. Not much inspiration here-just a chance to use all of my "crockery" in all of the colors that I love. I must say that when we sit down at night to watch some TV, I miss having any lighting along the mantle. It is just something I have gotten used to and there are truly very few decor themes where I don't have something hanging there. It gives the room a warm and cozy feel. Most of the candles are on timers and the others I light but, it just isn't the same. If I had hustled, I might have been able to find some summer string lights on clearance but now that everyone has back-to-school already on their shelves, I may have missed my chance this year!

Just looking at this makes me long for that firebox to be full of a flaming fire! Can't wait!!

The more that I look at these pictures and realize just how UNinspired this room is, the more I want to run out and find some lights. There may be a treasure hunt in my very near future! Stay tuned.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Inspiration Strikes...

If you read my last post, you will remember me saying how much of my house comes from Pottery Barn-especially this time of the year! I devour each new catalog as it comes and could almost literally move into those pages!! I have so much of their stuff-or reasonable, less expensive facsimiles from HL, Pier 1, etc. that I can very often recreate a vignette from those pages that I simply fall in love with. And, that was the case, just this morning, in our dining room. I was ready to do this post but thought I would have one more cup of coffee as I looked at their most recent catalog to arrive. When I flipped a page and saw a room very like my dining room with a tabletop dressing that spoke to me, I headed into several other rooms in the house to "collect" pieces and changed the centerpiece on the spot! I love it when that happens and it justifies me keeping all of the stuff that I have-kind of.  I was a big fan of Christopher Lowell when he had a decorating show on TV and he was a big advocate of everyone having a "merchandising collection". He called it something else but it translates to me as "lots of stuff at your disposal so can pull and tweak whenever the inspiration strikes". I love to be able to go to those wonderful shelving areas (in my garage- that my SIL built for me) all color or theme coded and find something similar enough to what I am looking for that I don't have to make any new purchases. And, usually for me, one thing leads to another so we will see where today's little adventure leads!

In any case, here is the most current-always subject to change-dining room dressed for late summer.

I'm not a big fan of the grapes just laying on the shelf but I put them there to remind me that the arrangement from which they fell is MIA. I can see it as plain as day and vaguely remember something about it-and a few other things I used in my spring decor-being put somewhere special so I could find it easily-yeah, right!! I have looked everywhere I would normally store it so I am letting it go and I will stumble on it soon-I hope! 


So that is where we are right now. Oh yes, I did find another inspiration in the PB catalog. There is a bedroom design that speaks to me and is very similar to our bedroom right now-except for the wall color. I haven't painted that room in a long time so it may be needed. But, the room is a very soft peach and that has really never been a big favorite of mine so I am going to "sit" on it a bit and see how I feel about it in a week or so. I have already checked all of my seasonal bedding and I think it will go with that and it will definitely go with my patterned carpeting and, I think it will pick up one of the tones in the new bathroom flooring that adjoins the room...hmmmm, maybe I have just answered my question. Stay tuned.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

My Obsessions

As I was downloading all of these photos, it became clear to me that the late summer decor is all about Pottery Barn, Southern Living at Home and, of course, sunflowers. It appears that I am a bit obsessed with all of them.This is one of the times of the year that red, orange, green and gold all come out to play together...and that means most of my urns, pitchers, pots, etc. can join the well as the other various and sundry Mediterranean influenced decor pieces. With no other real holiday decorations in the mix, the house kind of comes off as a display area for olive jars, oil urns, etc. It makes me feel like I am at a villa in Tuscany-lol!

In any case, here is this year's kitchen.

I still love using the little flower pot that the three youngest grand kids made me one year with their fingerprints in the middle of the flowers...and, of course, it is filled with my PB garden veggies.

Since the colors of the decor run in the citrus arena, and it is very Mediterranean, I like to bring out all of my lemons, limes and oranges now too.

Almost everything on this piece is from Southern Living at Home with the exception of the lamp and the plate and pitcher. Can you tell that daughter #1 used to be a dealer?

So that's it for the kitchen. I am spending any of my free time still perusing for this year's Halloween craft ideas. I am chomping at the bit to get out and buy some supplies and get going but somehow nothing has truly spoken-at least not quite loudly enough-so I continue to look. We shall see. Stay tuned.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Let the Sun Shine!!

Well, let the "sun" flowers shine that is!

For some reason or other, the rains really were to my advantage the other day. They were coming down fast and furious and we decided that it would be the perfect day to stay home. That translated to me as the perfect day to take down the 4th of July decor and get ready for the dog days of summer!!! Anyone who knows me knows that this is my LEAST favorite time of the year-apologies to all of my teacher friends who keep telling me I am wishing away their summer break-but, so be it! I didn't like it even back when I was teaching and wished it away even then.

That being said, you all also know how much I ADORE autumn. So, my choice of sunflowers for my summer decor holds a bit of a two-sided definition. To me, they are SUNflowers, so that is all it takes to work into my summer theme. And, since they also hold that "autumn" feel to them, I begin to decompress and start to breathe again.

And so, let me welcome you to the first of my late summer rooms-warning!!!! Sunflower overload ahead!!

This basket on the front door usually is full of sunflowers. But, being as obsessed as I seem to be this year, I needed those somewhere else so I found these summer colored poppies in one of my boxes. I wasn't happy that they didn't really portray the "theme" of the house so I added the little summer tie on that had the sunflowers already.

I think I have posted before about these tie-ons. When my mom was living in an independent living facility, the doors to each of the apartments were all the same. It was fun to see how everyone decorated them to make their little sanctuary stand out. Since Mom didn't want to bother with any more storage, I hung a plain grape vine wreath for her and once every month, I tied on a new seasonal accent. I have them all now and can always seem to find just the right place that needs a little boost. Since the sunflowers were there and the theme was summer, it added just what I was looking for-and, at no additional effort or expense!

I am showing you this picture just because I want to mention that large basket under the chest. That was an impulse buy at Tuesday Morning. It was marked way down and even though my girls kept telling me NOT to buy it-and, I really had no idea where it would go-I don't know how I ever lived without it!! It now contains all of my spring faux florals as well as many spring accent pieces. And, the chest is full of all of my green candles. Now when I go to put out spring, it is all-well, almost all-in one spot! Once again the scale is empty. I might think of something to put in there but right now I keep drawing a blank!

The colors on this chest are why I love my summer decor! They remind me that autumn is coming!! I so love those copper and rust tones!

I still love this arrangement I bought at Julie's oh so many years ago but, back then, it didn't have the sunflowers. I added them a few years ago so they would fit my theme for this time of year. I can simply pull them out and still use this arrangement many other times of the year.

When looking at the coffee table, I realize how long I have had most of those items. I guess when I buy things that really speak to me, I don't mind using them over and over and I am not in as big a hurry as I might be to replace them. 

It's funny how these two pictures of the same room at the same time make it look like two different colors!

And, as I am so wont to do this time of year, I was looking at some Halloween items coming to me via e-mail and, of course, something caught my eye. I had wanted this metal picture from Pier 1 last year but didn't want to spend what they were asking. I thought I would wait for a sale and then life got in the way and I didn't think of it again. How nice of them to send me a message showing some of this year's offerings. What a surprise to see it still listed as well as on sale with an additional % off for the 4th of July. Yep, that's how I roll-buying Halloween decorations literally on the 4th of July-doesn't everyone? It came yesterday and I love it as much as I knew I would because it has my favorite-the raven-and, I'm a pretty big fan of the chandelier too. Sometimes a little "present to myself" is all I need to keep me going. I'll be back with more soon. Stay tuned.